Yes, indeed they are.
Respect in a fit of rage
Mental health and mental illnesses are indeed real. With all due respect to those might deny this fact, mental health is a person’s condition with regard to their psychological and emotional well-being. Mental health can be negatively affected by many circumstances, from self-esteem, feeling loved, confidence, family breakup or loss, difficult behaviour, physical ill health, abuse, social, familial or environmental situations.
It can be hard to stay respectful yet trying to explain what mental health and mental illness to others who do not have the same issues. This post gets a little ranty, and for that I apologise.
“You’re Not Sick.”
I have been told that I am not indeed sick. I am simply looking for a way to get everything around me to fit into my expectations. That sounds absurd. It is absurd. While I suspect the person who told this to me might have a poor mental health, I cannot ignore the fact that we are able to discount something that physically affects many around the world. This ranges from those who see themselves in a bad light, to those who physically self-harm or to those who take their own lives because of their mental health.
To discount the actions of many against themselves to a sentence saying they are “not sick” and instead seeking attention can be sickening to those who are affected by mental illness.
Fitting Around To Fitting In
Maybe they are, maybe they are seeking attention. They need help. They want to fit in, but mental illness makes them alone.
People say “there is help” and “you are not alone”, but the truth is that depression is one of the loneliest things in the world. You’re alone with you mind. Only you know how you feel. You are alone with fighting your individual demons. The doctor has 5 minutes time for you once in a while. Even if you’re in a mental hospital, you’re really alone most of the time and get to talk to someone once in a while if you’re lucky. People have to get out the pit themselves, but even if they suicide they have to do it alone.
That’s what makes it so frustrating. You’ve been taught to rely on society and family and justice and medicine all your life. Suddenly you’re alone. You tear down the colorful wallpapers and behind it you find only empty gray walls. It was all fake from the beginning.
There are many things that people who struggle with mental health are trying to accomplish. They want to be as ‘normal’ as possible and rely on others for help, but instead, all that are pointed out are our flaws. All that is pointed out is all the wrong things that we have been doing, all the self-harm, the negative thinkings and the suicidal thoughts.
Instead of being credited for seeking help (albeit sometimes through the wrong ways), at least they have identified that they need help. Instead of helping them, we end up berating them for doing stupid things. Instead of crediting them for the great efforts they have put in, we tell them that they are not ‘sick’, not ‘normal’ and need to change. We know that and we are trying to change. But telling us whether we need change or how we change is – I think – something too large for any being to do.
Unless you can explain how the universe started from a point a trillionth the size of the full stop that ends this sentence, every other advice you can give to help someone with poor mental health is simply a swing – and sometimes you hit the ball, but sometimes you don’t.
Lastly, I do believe that we are all entitled to feeling happy, sad, frustrated, at peril or at the top of the world.
Just because you have gone through your own frustrations does not allow you to discount others who might have their own frustrations. Sure, you might not understand what they are going through like how they do not understand what you have been going through. But I believe that it is basic human decency and respect to allow each and every one of us to have our happy times and sad times, highs and lows and periods of joy and shame.
Mental health and mental illness is something we truly don’t know about. So is antimatter and dark energy, and we look forward to finding new things about these unknowns every single day. But I do believe that respect should be at the centre of all. Because without respect, we accomplish nothing. Respect the universe and it shall show you what lies beyond our greatest pieces of knowledge. Respecting others just makes you less of an asshole and more of a person.
We get angry, but respect should lie in that fit of rage.
It doesn’t. Yeah, we’re not alone in having depression, but everyone who has it lives in a universe where every inhabitant lives on a separate island that only fits one person, all the other islands are out of reach, and there’s no boats.
All suffering is experienced alone. However, that does not mean you are alone in experiencing suffering.
References, Links & Sources